Supporting Adults in Youth Work

There are a lot of reasons to support youth engagement, including it’s affects on young people and the larger communities they’re part of. Today I want to share an excellent opportunity to find out how youth engagement affects adults and to support them in the process. Kyla Lackie of Seattle’s SOAR ( and I areContinue reading “Supporting Adults in Youth Work”

Focus On Great

Today I had a great conversation with Cindy Van Arnam, the wonderful leader behind Focus On Great. For the last while Cindy has been talking with youth across central British Columbia focused on how they can “be great” and do great things throughout society. I really enjoyed talking with Cindy, and heard the world shrinkContinue reading “Focus On Great”

Three Tips for Youth Work Job Seekers

A few weeks ago I started offering free youth worker job coaching for people who have lost their jobs or are searching for jobs working with young people. Since I began I have talked with 20 people from across the US and Canada.  Here are a few tips I’ve pulled together that keep emerging inContinue reading “Three Tips for Youth Work Job Seekers”

Youth As More Than Youth

Talking with young people about youth engagement, they say they want something meaningful more often than ever. Without me prompting them or sharing any particular tools, more youth are asking for depth and purpose in the different ways they are involved than I have ever heard. But there is usually a stumble in the conversationContinue reading “Youth As More Than Youth”

Youth Mainstreaming

“Youth mainstreaming” is a deliberate movement to increase the awareness and participation of young people throughout society. It’s a term I’ve run across in European youth literature, and one of several terms UNESCO uses that aren’t popular in the U.S. Youth mainstreaming seems to be an emerging idea whose time is coming. There is a fairlyContinue reading “Youth Mainstreaming”

Redefining Adultism

An apple is an apple and an orange is an orange. Based on this belief, last month I unveiled my new definition for adultism at a youth commission retreat in Connecticut, and now I’m prepared to share it with you. The following is from the newly written Freechild Project Intro to Adultism: Adultism is theContinue reading “Redefining Adultism”

My First Job in Youth Work

We all start somewhere. 20 years ago I had my start working professionally with youth. A small nonprofit in my neighborhood in North Omaha, Nebraska, hired me to work with an acting program called “You’re The Star.” This program, based on Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, was focused on teaching children and youth aboutContinue reading “My First Job in Youth Work”

Diversity and Youth Voice

Engaging non-traditionally engaged young people is not a mysterious process – neither is it a foriegn, “Other”-oriented mystery, nor is it a process that you do the same every time. Identifying diversity is an important beginning, but along the way action is required. Following are important tips for young people and adults who want toContinue reading “Diversity and Youth Voice”

“An Ephebiphoic and Pediaphobic Society”

Today I came across an article from a prevention-focused website in the U.K. The article discusses whether the British are a culture that is afraid of children and youth, and cites the Freechild Project website as the source for a politician’s usage of the words ephebiphobia and pediaphobia. In some strange turn of events FreechildContinue reading ““An Ephebiphoic and Pediaphobic Society””